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Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
3/26/22 6:49 p.m.

That's what we spent at Lowe's today on dirt and veggies for the community garden plot Tim and I are gardening. $140 at our local farmers' market would buy a metric E36 M3-ton of food. We will be lucky to get several servings of veggies. Why do we do this?

Margie

02Pilot
02Pilot UberDork
3/26/22 7:08 p.m.

Until you turn a derelict NA Miata into a planter for said vegetables, I'm not sure how this is relevant. cheeky

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
3/26/22 7:12 p.m.

I mean, it is off topic, but you're probably not wrong.

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
3/26/22 7:18 p.m.

For $10 you can get enough seeds to do the same for many years.  And with your grass clippings + food waste, you can make your own compost for free.  That's what I do.  

Although, I'm about to spend about $80 making a new raised bed garden- the cost of the corrugated metal.

To help next season, keep the plastic planters for starters.  

dculberson
dculberson MegaDork
3/26/22 7:19 p.m.

I would hate to total up what me and my family have spent on gardening supplies. But we do get many pounds of veggies from it. Probably not enough to justify the expense. So I don't know! Why do we do it?

well, for one it's impossible to get tomatoes as good as my moms from a store. Even a farmers market can't match garden fresh ripe tomatoes. No way no how. So that's one reason!

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
3/26/22 7:25 p.m.

That's why we buy the veggies and only plant things that stick around. We're up to 5 raspberry vines, a literal castle turret of strawberries, 4 blueberries, 2 plum trees, and an apple tree. The only thing we plant seasonally are grape tomatoes for the kids to snack on.

Woody (Forum Supportum)
Woody (Forum Supportum) MegaDork
3/26/22 8:27 p.m.

You need to plant some cows and pigs to see the real savings. 

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
3/26/22 9:43 p.m.

Yeah, seeds cost way more than they should, but the prices garden centers get for vegetable plants is straight up offensive.  It doesn't make sense to spend more on supplies and plants than it would cost to buy all the veggies in a store.

 

mtn
mtn MegaDork
3/26/22 10:10 p.m.

You do it because there are only two things that money can't buy: true love, and homegrown tomatoes 

 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
3/26/22 10:18 p.m.
Marjorie Suddard said:

That's what we spent at Lowe's today on dirt and veggies for the community garden plot Tim and I are gardening. $140 at our local farmers' market would buy a metric E36 M3-ton of food. We will be lucky to get several servings of veggies. Why do we do this?

Margie

I have done similar dumb things.

Usually those costs are fairly one-time though.  Like alfa said, you can get seeds for very little $ for the following years.

The nice thing about home-grown is that the food is there and you don't have to go to the store to get it.  And sometimes the local store doesn't have decent veggies in stock.  Farmers markets are a huge pain in the ass on a whole different level.

 

IF I could get tomatoes to grow right I could save some decent $.  Those things are expensive as hell.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
3/26/22 10:20 p.m.

Wait until you hear about fishing.

RevRico
RevRico UltimaDork
3/26/22 10:24 p.m.

Since I'm doubling my pepper plants this year, I'm looking at close to 60lbs by October frost. $3 a pack for seeds, I'll sell extra plants for $3 each, garden should be free if not profitable, before first harvest. 

mtn
mtn MegaDork
3/26/22 11:06 p.m.
JG Pasterjak said:

Wait until you hear about fishing.

I feel attacked. 

jgrewe
jgrewe HalfDork
3/27/22 1:31 a.m.

I had a friend calculate that venison actually costs about $90 a pound the way he gets it with a $1 bullet

preach (dudeist priest)
preach (dudeist priest) Dork
3/27/22 7:15 a.m.

I am planning retirement in less than a decade. When I do I shall grow my own food, hoping to grow all of it. I like to know where it came from and what is in/on it.

Toyman!
Toyman! MegaDork
3/27/22 8:27 a.m.

My parents planted a 1-acre garden right after my father retired. They kept it up for a couple of years and figured it saved them zero dollars. Mom planted flowers the following year and that plot is now grass. 

A small operation just can't compete with industrial-scale farming on a per pound basis. Not even close. 

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
3/27/22 8:31 a.m.

You did the right thing - in Chicago our best tomato's hit in August and there is nothing like a BLT with your home grown tomato's for dinner.   
 

914Driver
914Driver MegaDork
3/27/22 8:41 a.m.
Marjorie Suddard said:

 Why do we do this?

Margie

Possibly for the same silly reason our son harvests maple juice from trees to make maple syrup.  The same reason he risks angry bees to glean honey for home use.  Fun, educational, gets you out and unlike project cars, there's a real return on your investment in both financially and satisfaction.

 

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
3/27/22 8:46 a.m.
Toyman! said:

My parents planted a 1-acre garden right after my father retired. They kept it up for a couple of years and figured it saved them zero dollars. Mom planted flowers the following year and that plot is now grass. 

A small operation just can't compete with industrial-scale farming on a per pound basis. Not even close. 

What industrial scale farming misses, though, is flavor.  Nothing you get from a grocery store will compete with a freshly picked anything.  Tomatoes, berries, peppers, corn, etc.   Even potatoes are better fresh from the ground.

But some are so expensive that it cans save money DIY'ing it.  Like raspberries.  Those cost a ton, and are easy to grow.  And you can grow enough to make your own jam if you want.

Toyman!
Toyman! MegaDork
3/27/22 8:58 a.m.

In reply to alfadriver :

True, but Mom and Dad have a local farm about a mile away that has a vegetable stand. They get the fresh-picked in-season flavor without the work or the expense.  

There has also been a push at the local grocery stores to stock local in-season vegetables. Even Publix has decent produce most of the time as long as you are shopping for in-season items. 

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
3/27/22 9:00 a.m.

Yeah, we also bought seeds, but since this is a community garden plot that just opened up--I've been on the waiting list for close to a year--it's too late to start seeds for most of what we can grow here in the summer, so those are for next round. I do have nice row of radishes in that I started a couple weeks ago, and yeah, we put in a couple strawberries with the goal of having them spread and be ready to fruit next spring. Mostly, though, it's tomatoes, peppers and squashes.

As Tim said, we've spent more on stupider stuff. Which needs to go on the Suddard family crest.

Margie

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
3/27/22 9:02 a.m.
Toyman! said:

In reply to alfadriver :

They get the fresh-picked in-season flavor without the work or the expense.  

 

Every summer I challenge why we do this when we spend a few Saturday mornings sweating and pulling weeds.  

I told my wife there are couples that grab a coffee and hit up the farmers market - not all this work but in the end........

Toyman!
Toyman! MegaDork
3/27/22 9:03 a.m.
Marjorie Suddard said:

...we've spent more on stupider stuff. 

I'm reasonably certain everyone on here can claim that statement.  

914Driver
914Driver MegaDork
3/27/22 9:25 a.m.

Margie, if there's a riding stable etc. nearby, at the end of the season offer to muck out one of the stables.  Horse manure sitting in your spot over the winter will make MONSTER TOMATOES in the spring.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver UltimaDork
3/27/22 9:49 a.m.

We threw down on our garden last year, grew cucumbers, squash, kale, spinach...

 

Well, we battled deer and squash beetles... The cucumbers came out terribly bitter and we only got one harvest of kale/spinach before the deer annihilated it.

 

Now the missus wants me to fence the garden.

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